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Benjamin Franklin Yancey Elementary School

B. F. Yancey Elementary School, 2018

Name:  Benjamin Franklin (B.F.) Yancey Elementary School

Date:  2018

Image Number:  MJ36cdMJ02

Comments:  Benjamin F. Yancey Elementary School was founded in 1960 and named after the teacher, who came into Albemarle County in the late 1800's to create a school for African Americans.  In 1961, Albemarle County completed a fine brick structure at 7625 Porters Road in Esmont on the 7 acres of Esmont Colored School property which had been procured by Esmont's black community.  B.F. Yancey School housed kindergarten through fifth grade students, with sixth-eighth grade students attending Walton Middle School.  Albemarle County's black high schools (including Esmont HS students) also had consolidated into Jackson P. Burley High School in Charlottesville a decade earlier.   In 1964 the Civil Rights Act, outlawing discrimination based on race and guaranteeing equal educational opportunities, was passed.  B.F. Yancey Elementary School became desegregated and slowly grew and adapted to a new diverse student body.

Following is a list of people who served as principal at B.F. Yancey Elementary School:

       Term          Principal
2012 - 2017  Craig Dommer
2006 - 2006  Allison Dwier-Seiden
2004 - 2006  Jeanette Avery
2001 - 2004  Debra Collins
1990 - 2001  Sidney Tate
1985 - 1990  Carolyn Paige
1982 - 1985  Carolyn Gaines
1977 - 1982  Gerald Terrell
1974 - 1977  Manie Philips
1971 - 1974  Jimmy Jones
1967 - 1971  Fulton Marshall
1961 - 1967  Elisha Gantt
1960 - 1961  Isaac Faulkner

B.F. Yancey Elementary School was the product of numerous expansions and renovation, and by 2017, it occupied 27,000 feet of property.  That expansion is a testament to the efforts and dedication of the Esmont community to develop and broaden educational opportunities for each new generation of young scholars.  By the 2016-2017 school year, however, B.F. Yancey's school population had declined to 118 students as a result of limited development and economic activity in this rural area of Southern Albemarle.  Additionally, the availability of federal funding to provide equitable access to services needed by Yancey students was uncertain.  As a result, Albemarle County Public Schools voted to close B.F. Yancey Elementary School and consolidate Yancey into Red Hill and Scottsville elementary schools.

B.F. Yancey Elementary closed after fifty-six years in 2017.  When the bell rang to let school out for the last time on June 9, 2017, 103 years of educational history at this Porters Road site came to an end.
B. F. Yancey Elementary School, 2017
As of July 2018, the former Yancey School property was undergoing a comprehensive review by the Albemarle County Planning Staff to determine if the county's current plan to use this structure as a community center and provide enhanced access to programs and services to the Southern Albemarle community is in substantial accord with the County's Comprehensive Plan.

Scottsville Museum wishes to thank Maxwell Johnson for his research and photographs on this Esmont community school!

1)  Scottsville Museum, "Esmont Colored School"; see: Esmont Colored School.
2)  Mandell, Josh, "Inside the struggle 'to overcome numbers' in Yancey Elementary's final years", Charlottesville TOMORROW, Friday, September 21, 2018; p..
3)  Albemarle County Planning Staff Report, Project Name: CCP201800003 Yancey Community Center, July 17, 2018.
4)  Cville Pedia, "Yancey Elementary School", see:
5)  Wrabel, Allison, "Albemarle School Board votes to close Yancey Elementary School," The Daily Progess, Charlottesville:  May 25, 2017.

Copyright © 2018 by Scottsville Museum

Top Image Located On:  Capturing Our Heritage, CDMJ02

Bottom Image Located On:  Capturing Our Heritage, CDCG2017



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